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tv   The Daily Rundown  MSNBC  March 17, 2011 9:00am-10:00am EDT

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mika is very, i have to say, mika is very skeptical of these numbers attached to corporal punishment in schools. she just doesn't believe it. >> well, it definitely exists. >> she went off camera with that paddle. >> thanks. it's way too early it's "morning joe." now, stick around with chuck todd. well, desperately trying to avoid a catastrophic meltdown. japanese military helicopters are simply dropping sea water on the crippled nuclear reactor. but the situation seems to have already deteriorated. straining relations slightly. the u.s. government tells americans in japan to move back from their reactor four times further than what the japanese government is advising its own population. meanwhile, in the middle east, on libyan tv just reported that gadhafi's punishing offensive has reached the
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outskirts of bengahzi. today the united nation votes on a no-fly zone and a broader range of options including possible air strikes. our guest this morning general wesley clark. i'm chuck todd, savannah is on assignment. happy st. patrick's day. speaking out about his unwavering support of nuclear power. president obama is under fire for sticking to his schedule and policies in the face of alarming world events. is he showinged amirable discipline or looking like a failure of leadership? let's get to the rundown and start in japan. we begin with the death toll from last week's earth earthquake and tsunami is now stands at 5,429. nearly 10,000 are missing. president obama last night spoke to the japanese prime minister to express his condolences and getten ean update on the nucle
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crisis. the two countries don't see eye-to-eye on the danger. they urged american citizens leaving japan. americans are told to keep at least 50 miles from the fukushima nuclear plant. that is five times larger than the zone established for the japanese. at the plant, last-ditch efforts have begun. military helicopters and water canyons were used today to keep the reactors from overheating. they hope to get power running to the water pumps by the end of the day. people are now packing up and leaving tokyo, despite assurances from the government that there is no reason to go. nbc chief health and science correspondent bob bazell joins me on the phone now from tokyo. bob, what are you seeing with american citizens there and how quickly are they trying to leave? >> well, chuck, they're not running, they're not sprinting, but it's tough to get a flight out at the moment. there's a lot of people who are heeding the advice. a lot of japanese people are
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also, if they have the wherewithal are getting out of the tokyo area. right now those six reactors and at least four of them are in deep, deep trouble, as you pointed out, are the winds are such that they're aiming at tokyo, which has a population, as you know, of 30 million people. it is a big deal. >> and what is it that, you know, right now we know that the u.s. state department is going to charter flights for families of u.s. government personnel in three of the regions, including tokyo, but also in the northern part of the region and then allow american citizens to buy seats on those planes. but the u.s. government says there are still plenty of seats to be purchased and that's why they're not bringing even more planes in for private citizens. >> yeah, i don't think there's that much of a problem. i think people getting out. also, we should point out, there has not been a significant leak of radiation in the power plants. the problem is the potential and the situation, as you just
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described, where they had to resort to flying over with helico helicopters today, which really is very reminiscent of the scenes of chernobyl. it is very much of a last-ditch effort. and one of the things that just amazed me is that i've bipartisan covering this story all week and i've talked to a lot of experts on nuclear power around the world and including here in japan and united states and europe and a lot of people who before were saying down playing this are now saying they are literally sickened and they're so upset about it, about how it has been handled and the lack of communication and apparently about some business that the company may have carried out about fuel rods and didn't either tell the government. >> bob bazell our chief science correspondent in tokyo for us. thank you very much. i'll turn to one of our pexpeex that we have been using.
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david albright. all right, david, let's start with the testimony that we heard yesterday by chairman yatsko of the nuclear regulatory commission where he seems to have a much bleaker outlook about this nuclear plant than the japanese officials. what is going on? >> still a lot of confusion, but he said based on his information from the japanese government and industry that the spent fuel pond is empty. which is very, very disturbing because it means there has probably been a fire or fires in the metal cladding of the fuel. there have been releases of radiation, probably very significant releases and, if you start just pouring water on it, again, without thinking it through carefully, you could reignite fires. but, tepko quickly denied that that was the case and said that there was actually water in the pool and they've been debating back and forth where the nrc is
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sticking to its story. >> is it safe for somebody to physically be in this fourth reactor? is it safe? so, right now we have nobody knows for sure. nobody has physically gone in there to say, yes, because it's unsafe. >> the u.s. reconnaissance plane was going to help try to figure it out. look under the roof, in a sense, from sideways and just get a sense of how empty it is and get a status report because the information is lacking. the radiation levels outside those reactors, though, remains very high. i mean, it's not true there haven't been significant releases and there's something going on either in reactor 3 or also if you have an empty spent fuel pond, a massive source of gamma remifications. it doesn't have to be empty, if the fuel, the water levels are low or part of it is exposed,
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you have an incredibly deadly source of radiation. >> when you see helicopters now flying over, just trying to drop water canyons and what looks like, frankly, to me, they look like they're missing. >> a lot of wind. >> obviously. it looks like a lay person, like this is a desperate attempt. is that how desperate things are? >> i don't think they're desperate in that sense. they're thinking through. they want to get water into the spent fuel ponds. particularly under 3. that may not be dry. and it's open, so you can get the water there. but i think the problem is, this is way beyond what a utility company can deal with. i mean, it really does need to, the whole thing needs to be taken over by the japanese government. the international experts -- >> that hasn't been the case. i'm going back to the oil spill and there was always this initial fight between the government and bp and who was going to be in charge of the recovery efforts because there was a lot of distrust of what was going on with bp. you heard bob bazell's report
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that there is some concern that perhaps, not only is tepco unable to cover this, but maybe they're trying to cover up some things that wasn't up to code. >> that i don't know . i have been a guest of theirs on several briefings and i had briefings by then where they tried to turn another corner. i think this is way beyond what they could cope with and any mistakes magnified in this crisis. i think it's important that someone else take charge and you bring in the experts. not to create panic with this or fear, but people say this isn't like chernobyl. i would say, that's right. it's not, it's its own accident. the amount of radio activity at this site is much greater than anything we ever dealt with with chernobyl. there's tremendous risk if we don't get thing this under control and stop the releases of
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radio activity, which was reported today in japan, government doesn't even know how much was released. >> you said yesterday and it startled a lot of people that there was going to be elevated levels of radio activity and now we're hearing reports from the government that that is the case. >> i have to be clear, that's low levels. >> you say we have to get this under control. they don't have this under control by any means at this point. >> it is unfortunate, but it does require a government to take control of this, perhaps even a military. but definitely needs nr international experts. >> are they going to be begging the united states? >> i think the united states will have to play a much stronger role. we will have to respect their sovereignty and culture, but the united states has to play a much greater role. >> your concern with this spent fuel pond, if it's dry as the
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fears of the nrc, what does that mean? >> there's no barrier to stop it. if it heats up, the metal around the fuel fails and it bursts, it cracks and you get large amounts of radiation being released. >> that makes it worse. this is worse than chernobyl. >> it could be, if you're not careful. it doesn't have to be. we don't know the final tally yet. but it could, there's a risk that this could seriously or significantly outpace churinably. >> david albright, you've been terrific. thank you. i have a feeling we'll see you today and tomorrow. up next, the crisis in japan is spooking some of the biggest fans of nuclear power. should we be rethinking our r y reliance on nuclear power? next, we'll talk to senator alexander. he's sticking to his guns insisting that nuclear power is safe. plus, stocks plunged again on wednesday with most of this year's market gains already gone. is the economic recovery at risk because of the crisis in japan?
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but, first, a look ahead at the president's schedule today. he's got a bunch of st. patrick's day events. we're likely to hear about an additional stop on a european trip in may. you're watching "daily rundown" on msnbc. in between, there's motrin pm. no other medicine, not even advil pm, is more effective for pain and sleeplessness. motrin pm.
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>> when this crisis is abated, we'll take a good, solid look at everything that comes out of japan. if we need to make modifications to our facilities in this country, then we'll do that. well, the u.s. nuclear regulatory commission says the odds of an earthquake causing catastrophic failure to a nuclear plant right here in the united states are ten times better than you winning the
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powerball lottery. with 20% of u.s. electricity generated by nuclear plants, many are defending the safety industry record. senator lamar alexander is warning against panics. driving decisions here in the united states. he joins me now. tennessee has three nuclear power plants, is that right, senator, currently in use? >> that's right. >> go ahead. >> no, well, tennessee valley authority has six and is building a new one. >> i want to go to something. i want to play a clip of what secretary of state hillary clinton said to andrea mitchell about nuclear power and the future of it in the united states and get you to respond to it. take a listen. >> i have concerns about a lot of our energy issues. we need an energy policy. that's something that president obama has repeatedly and we needed it to be yesterday and it has to be comprehensive. i think what happens in japan raises questions about the costs and the risks associated with
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nuclear power. but we have to answer those. >> now, senator, i understand your position on saying, you know, you can't make legislation in the midst of a crisis where people are in a panic mode. but what you're seeing in japan and how you're seeing of what happens when there's a catastrophic failure at a nuclear power plant. any doubts in your mind or any questions you have saying, you know what, if we're going to pursue nuclear power, we have to be very careful on this part of it now or maybe we didn't do this right. any doubts in your minds? >> well, certainly questions. and we need to look at those. no doubts in my mind. i am absolutely convinced. i can't imagine a future for the united states with enough clean electricity to run the country. we use about 25% of all the electricity in the world without nuclear power. what we're not seeing right now is coal plants, for example, produce a lot of pollutants that cause thousands of deaths every year. that's what the american lung
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association tells you. nuclear power plants in the united states have not produced a death at a commercial reactor and neither have our, neither have our nuclear navy ships and, in fact, our most celebrated accident, three mile island. no one was hurt at three mile island. >> when you look at, you know, we're all becoming familiar now with how some of these reactors work in a very lay person's way. you probably know a lot more because of the nuclear plants in tennessee and how important the nuclear industry is in tennessee. you know, we still don't have a place where we store these spent rods, you know. there's a lot of political controversy about that. they try to have a yucca mountain for years and, obviously, nevada doesn't want it. this is now what is at risk in japan. right, is this storage facility of this spent nuclear waste, essentially. and that's the greatest risk now. if politically, do you really think we can get to a point where there will be a place to
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safely put this nuclear waste to make these plants safer? because right now it seems as if the plants are less safe because they have to store the waste on site. >> i don't agree with that. i mean, all the nuclear regulatory commission and all of our scientists believe that we can store these spent rods safely on site for the next 60 or 80 years. france is 80% nuclear. it stores all of its used nuclear fuel in an area the size of two basketball fields 30 feet deep. all you need is to keep it cool. the problem in japan is because of this huge earthquake and then the tsunami, it messed up the cooler apparatus. the cooling apparatus didn't work, not the reactor. >> would you believe that some of these nuclear plants, the ones that were built say in the same generation that the fukushima plant was built that maybe we should consider shutting those downs or at least figure how to quickly modernize
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them? >> i'm not ready to say that, chuck. we are already getting ready to have a new generation of nuclear power plants and nuclear regulatory commission looking at seven new designs and they haven't built a new plan in the united states for seven years from scratch. they will incorporate all the possible safety features and we're even moving towards a reprocessing way, a way to take used nuclear fuel and just use it over and over and over again so it's not separated. >> i want to ask you a quick question on libya. senator richard luger, the top republican foreign relations believes any military, anything that the president want to do militarily that he needs to go to congress and ask for some sort of resolution. he said, actually, they need a war resolution. senator chuck schumer, the number three democrat in the senate believes you don't need any, that congress doesn't have to have any say if the united
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nations backs any no-fly zone and backs by any means a necessary cause in the regulation. what says you? >> that's a historic debate that the president has to come ask us what to do. i think if we don't have a resolution, the president at least needs to consult with congress about anything that might be considered an act of war in libya. >> so, you would like to see a resolution? i mean, when you say consult, that means a resolution, no? >> no, not necessarily. i think throughout our history we had different stages of it. one is to have a big debate, as we did in vietnam and vote on it. another way to do is for the president to show respect to the congress and come up, say these are things that i have got to do. i have to do them quickly and i have to consult with you and get your advice. i think that's what the president needs to do. >> advice in this case means passing some sort of resolution. >> not necessarily passing anything. it just means sitting down a
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meeting with congress and meeting with senior people like senator mccain and others and getting their advice and then going ahead. there's a variety of stages. we have to move quickly in libya f we're going to move at all because things are moving fast there. >> all right, on a little bit of a lighter note. you and donald trump seem to have a little bit of a war of words. i think you correctly identified him as someone that is fames for being famous. he didn't take too kindly to that. he'll still potentially a republican presidential candidate. does it trouble you that donald trump is trying to suck all this oxygen out of the republican party right now? >> the only thing that troubles me is that i ruined my chance to be his vice presidential nominee. >> in all seriousness, you don't think it's bad for the party if he's out there doing all these things? >> i had enough to say about him. all i can say is i'm an expert on what it takes to get a presidential race. i'm focusing on being a senator. >> senator lamar alexander. the number three republican in
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the senate. thanks very much for joining us this morning. >> thank you, chuck. up next, we're just minutes away from the opening bell on wall street. rattled by the nuclear crisis, the markets had their worst day since august. will they bounce back today? we'll preview the opening bell and many americans are looking for ways to help those affected by the earthquake and the tsunami. one way to help, text the red cross. 9 0999 to donate $10 or visit we also put some suggestions on our website. we'll be right back. everyone has someone to go heart healthy for. who's your someone?
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year. what is in store today? we're joined now by cnbc becky quick. i have to think that markets will go up today if they have gone down two days in a row. >> you couldn't have called it better. volatility is the word for this action. yesterday we saw the dow down 242 points and the dow will open up by about 140 points. again, everyone is watching what is happening in japan. that seems to be the key center of attention. at this point, the market moved higher because we did see japan move off the lows in isits session. it was down at one point by 5% and the nikkei closing down by 1.4%. in relative terms, that was a good thing as wall street sees it. a lot of volatility in all of these markets. oil prices continuing to pick up once again today. last i checked they were up to $2 to close to $100 a barrel, once again. these are all bets that traders are jumping in to and out of quickly. we did get economic numbers today and at least on one point that news was quite a bit better. jobless claims were down by 16,000 to 385,000.
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that is the fourth week in a row that we've seen a number below 400,000. also the lowest continuing claims number that we've seen since september of 2008. a little bit of good news there. if you look at the inflation front, still not looking that great. chuck, the prices that you and i pay that supermarket and other places are still continuing to decline. the consumer price index about an hour ago and showed the numbers were up by 0.5% for the month of february. the biggest increase that we've seen in more than a year and a half. let me tell you about fedex numbers. very important to watch the transports and came in with the earnings today. earnings below what the streets were expecting but better than what they anticipated over the past week and its outlook for the current quarter is better than the street had been expecting. they talked about strong demand around the fwloeb aglobe and pr power that were still able to get their margin. >> becky quick, you just gave me
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expectations whiplash with fedex. i tell you, they're better than politicians in playing the expectations game. >> they are. definitely are. >> becky quick at cnbc world headquarters. thank you. >> sure. too late for a no-fly zone in libya as the u.s. considers going simply beyond a no-fly zone to stop gadhafi's advances. we'll talk to general wesley clark who says military intervention may end up being a mistake. all about the irish at the white house today, green fountain and everything now is not the time for four-leaf clovers and leprechauns and march madness brackets. how the president is looking in the face of these multi-international crises. first, today's trivia question in honor of st. patrick's day. two parter. how many u.s. senators have there been with the name patrick? how many of them are currently serving in the united states senate?
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it rushes relief to the site of pain. feel better? yeah. thanks for the tip. well, in japan officials at the fukushima nuclear plants have suspended efforts to cool down the reactor to see if their efforts are working. i'm joined by ann curry in japan. there has also been a new message sent out to the ambassador of japan, a new message sent to american residents in japan reiterating the new state department policy advising u.s. citizens to stay 50 miles away. update us on all the latest. >> it's really sobering, first of all, to hear from your interview earlier with one david albright that what's happening here could potentially outpace chernobyl because that's exactly the opposite of what the people
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of japan are hearing. the japanese government is staying on message saying at a news conference today that its evacuation parameters are sound and only residents within 12 miles should evacuate while those within 19 miles should remain indoors and, as we've been reporting, the u.s. government is saying that american citizens on the other hand should evacuate to 50 miles. and there's yet another discrepancy and that is that the u.s. state department is urging u.s. citizens not to travel to japan at this time and those in japan should "consider departing." just a few hours ago a top japanese official in tokyo said that tokyo is safe and that there is no reason to leave. it's very interesting to note, chuck, that at the same time, tokyo streets are largely empty and its airports are full. people trying to leave the country. >> you know, ann, during the whole gulf oil spill. remember there was an initial battle, who was going to be in charge? is it bp, is it the government?
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looks like we'ring have a similar situation in japan. who is in charge of the response effort? is it the government? is it tepco. david albright said that perhaps it needs to be militarized. ask for a military compoentant. >> i think the international military component or an international military component of some type sounds what is really needed here. from inside the country what we're hearing is that this is overwhelming the company and, also, that the country itself, there's a lot of discussion about whether the country itself has a strong enough leadership to, in fact, take charge and knowingly know how to handle this kind of, you know, really unprecedented disaster. so, it very much might be that a multi-lateral kind of response might be necessary given just simply the nature of this. we're not even talking about the humanitarian problem here, chuck. we're just talking about the nuclear problem.
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i mean the humanitarian issue is really enormous further up north. i mean, there is a serious risk to life. just because the aid has not arrived and the conditions have worsened, especially with how cold, how bad the weather is and how little heat there is. so, this is an overwhelming, unprecedented type of disaster and it is uncertain as to why one agency or another is adequate to respond to it. >> ann curry for us in akita, japan. thanks very much, ann. >> all right, you're welcome, chuck. let's move to libya. the u.n. security council is expected to decide today on a resolution that could green light a no-fly zone over libya but also authorize more aggressive measures. what one person told me, by any means necessary clause, which could allow air strikes to keep gadhafi's forces from taking the rebel capital bengahzi.
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warned civilians to leave the city for it to be "cleared." the u.s. ambassador to the united states susan rice had this to say last night. >> the u.s. view is that we need to be prepared to contemplate steps that include but go beyond a no-fly zone. at this point as the situation on the ground has evolved. >> joining me now is general wesley clark and former supreme ally commander for nato and for international relations. he, of course, commanded nato forces during the air campaign in kosovo in 1999 and wrote an oh-ed in the washington post earlier saying military intervention would be a mistake. general clark, thanks very much. i want to start with what's going on in the united nations right now. what's being debated? it's beyond a no-fly zone. the united states wants something. it dozen get spelled out in the way it's done. you can explain this further, i
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hope. it could perhaps give its nato, arab league and you bring in egyptians and saudis to actually do it, but the ability for international forces to bomb a no-drive zone, if you will. gadhafi's forces to prevent it from getting to benghazi. >> those are all the logical measures that need to be looked at and improved internationally before the united states does anything. chuck, i want to be clear. i'm not saying the united states should not do anything in libya. i was asked to look at the lessons of past intervention. the lessons are that you have to have a basis for intervention in international law and when you start it, you need to be prepared to go all the way through the process to get the desired outcome. if the desired outcome is the removal of gadhafi, it may well take air strikes and more. that seems to be the direction we're going. i would only ask why we don't start with a call for an immediate cease-fire in place followed by diplomatic mission
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to try to transition it to a representative, legitimate government. keep all of the authorities in reserve. first, use diplomacy. when all diplomatic means have been exhausted, then go transition to other measures. but do first things first. >> well, let me show you, i want to play for you a clip from secretary hillary clinton's interview with andrea mitchell about this idea of frankly whether it may be too late to do anything in libya, here's what she had to say. >> what if it's too late? >> andrea, we're very aware of the actions of the gadhafi regime. we deeply regret thiz callus disregard of human life. his absolute willingness to slaughter his own people. but we think that there is a lot that can be done if we can reach international agreement on what should be done. >> and general clark, senator john kerry, chairman of the
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senate foreign relations committee, he said in a speech yesterday, "i don't like that we've lost this time. it's compacted the choices, diminished the options and it's changed the state of play somewhat." it seems to push back on your argument a little bit. you have to exhaust all these other resources. one could argue that the last couple of weeks that there have been a lot of measures that have been exhausted and now you're at the point where gadhafi is on the doorstep of bengahzi potentially about to slaughter thousands and thousands of libyans. >> senator kerry is right to be impatient about this. but we know from past experience that you've got to be able to line-up the so-called diplomatic ducks in order. the first thing to have done is to call for a cease-fire in place all of all forces. >> now, i am going to stop you there. when you say call for a cease-fire. gadhafi doesn't seem to be a guy that abides by suggestions like that. but you mean a specific u.n., you know, something that is, you know, the u.n. calling for a cease-fire.
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some sort of official call or ask? >> absolutely. that facilitates getting the stronger authorities that are necessary. and senator kerry and secretary clinton are both right. a lot of other measures and we've got to make sure we have things lined up the right way so that if this drags on not a week, but a month, six months, that when you look back at it, you can say we did everything possible we could do to save people on the ground and to use our own resources and our troops wisely before we rushed into something that just put us in an active war. there are nations, apparently, who don't agree with our perspective on gadhafi. he's worked a long time to charm nations in southern africa. some of these, apparently, are expressing support for gadhafi. we've got to bring the greatest possible pressure to get it stopped as soon as possible. the quickest thing to call for is a cease-fire in place. if he disobeys and rejects that call, then it facilitates moving to the more, to the stronger
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measures. >> now, it's my understanding that the russians at the united nations tried to put up a cease-fire resolution and it's basically been rejected. so, you believe that's a mistake. >> it depends on what the wording is in the cease-fire resolution. i think you have to tie all of these diplomatic measures together. if you were to put a cease-fire resolution up and say, call for cease-fire, wait three weeks and see what happens. well, that's a mistake. we're going to reject that. but starting with the call for cease-fire and moving through the no-fly zone and the authorization under chapter 7 to do more, that's the logical flow that this should unfold with. >> okay. but i guess we are where we are today. he is on the doorstep of b benghazi. >> i think they have to come together. i prefer to see arab leadership in this. >> do they have the air force? does the arab league have the
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air power to do this? is it egyptian and saudi air force, essentially? >> they have the air power to participate in it. they may not have all the air force command and control elements required, but they can certainly send a couple of squadrons of fighters. they could take the front line of it and they should do that. >> and is that your expectation at this point that the arab league by endorsing the idea of a no-fly zone is now prepared to go that next step? >> i think there is a discussion under way to try to do this. this always is a little tricky because you have to do the diplomatic level discussions and the military discussions simultaneously and work the feedback between the two levels. those discussions, i'm sure r under way now. hopefully we'll get not only participation by the arab league, but out front leadership by the arab league. >> general wesley clark. formernato supreme ally commander and veteran of both diplomatic and military campaigns. thank you for joining us this morning on "daily rundown." trivia time in honor of st.
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patrick's day. how many u.s. senators have there been with the name patrick and how many of them are currently serving? well, the answer, there have been only eight u.s. senators with the name patrick. none have had the last name of patrick and there are three patricks currently serving in the senate. senators patrick leahy, patrick toomey and patrick roberts. while the race to prevent a nuclear meltdown, new concerns of it headed to the united states. plus s president obama missing in action? >> today president obama went on espn to announce his ncaa tournament picks. whereas japan put it, really? you're kidding me. >> when you make the late-night monologues, that's not always good. we'll dig in to some of the criticism the president has been receiving, particularly from republicans. but his priorities and the questions about various
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leadership issues. but, first, the white house soup of the day. wow. i like this one. roasted red pepper and tomato. if you cool it down, it serveses a nice salad dressing. you're watching "daily rundown" on only on msnbc. today, investors want retirement planning on their terms. i want to work with people who are objective. how about a plan with my name on it... not someone else's. can we start with realistic goals please? and research that's strictly third party. show me how to keep more retirement money in my pocket. now, and down the road. those are my terms. those are my terms. those are my terms. then this is your place. td ameritrade. where millions of investors plan for retirement on their terms.
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goe mirrors all justed? you can see everything ok? just stay off the freeways, all right? i don't want you going out on those yet. and leave your phone in your purse, i don't want you texting. >> daddy... ok! ok, here you go. be careful. >> thanks dad. >> and call me--but not while you're driving. we knew this day was coming. that's why we bought a subaru. ooh, the price sure doesn't. i'm tired of shopping around. [ sigh ] too bad you're not buying car insurance. like that's easy. oh, it is. progressive direct showed me their rates and the rates of their competitors. i saved hundreds when switching. we could use hundreds. yeah. wake up and smell the savings. out there with a better way.
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now, that's progressive. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] with amazing innovation, driven by relentless competition, wireless puts the world at your command. ♪ her morning begins with arthritis pain. that's a coffee and two pills. the afternoon tour begins with more pain and more pills. the evening guests arrive. back to sore knees. back to more pills. the day is done but hang on... her doctor recommended aleve. just 2 pills can keep arthritis pain away all day with fewer pills than tylenol. this is lara who chose 2 aleve and fewer pills for a day free of pain.
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and get the all day pain relief of aleve in liquid gels. well, from washington's budget kriss to the disaster in japan and the unrest in the middle east, president obama has had quite the full plate. publicly, though, he has been sticking to his own agenda, focuses on jobs and education and even his ncaa basketball bracket.
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cnbc former bush white house director secretary and you've been on the inside and you know when these critiques come in. you look at just the events yesterday and the only two times we saw him in public were the ncaa brackets interview, that espn debuted at noon yesterday and a speech to those folks, not a fund-raiser. on a day when so much else was going on. look, he was working until midnight last night. we got a readout of a phone call he did with the prime minister. just perception. we saw the comity that it made the monologue. perception wise, are you looking at that scratching your head? >> absolutely. especially with the espn picks. look, i'm a huge college basketball fan, i've been to a dozen final fours. i was impressed with his picks and his knowledge of players, but that wasn't what the american people needed to see yesterday. i think no one would have been surprised if he had canceled the
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on-air -- >> here's my brackets. i'll see you next week maybe. >> i'm kind of busy right now. a lot of big things going on right now. the thing is, when you're president, it's a constant, you know, it's like surfing. you want to pick your waves. when it's foreign policy, crises, you can't pick your waves. you have to ride the waves that come in. domestic policy a little bit of a chance to pick those waves. >> david brooks had an interesting observation this week about the president and his style. here's what he writes in part. "the arab masses have seized control of the international agenda with their marches and bravery. the republicans on capitol hill and in madison, wisconsin, have seized control of the domestic agenda with calls for spending cuts. the obama administration has reacted to both of these movements by striking a prudent, middling course, prudence. but americans do have an expectation that their will be the one out." you are friends with these
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folks. >> good people. they haveha been criticized for using him too much in time of crises. here's a week where we're not seeing him enough. >> it definitely goes back and forth a lot. we made mistakes. we made a mistake on katrina with the question of whether or president bush should have felony oun. >> and then the thing in san diego. talk about the pressure of that inside the white house. in the bush white house, you had some bad pr moments. >> yeah. >> like what we just described, because the schedule is the schedule, and you get -- you getland handcuffed to it, don't you? >> you can get handcuffed to it. if you think about the amount of assets you commit to moving the president to go to a site and, you know, the investment in that, the secret service agents, the security, the costs, the attendees who will come action and you want to try to not always be in a crisis mode, you try to -- you want to try to keep it, but sometimes you just
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miss, you know, the sentiment. the comment that jay carney made yesterday in reaction to a question whether they should cancel the south america trip that the president will be leaving on, what he said was, you know, that's -- with respect to what's going on in japan, it's a joop niece crisis, it's not a crisis here in the united states, but when you're president of the united states, all big crises are your crises. when the stock market -- you spoke to becky quick. when the stock market is doing what it's doing, when it has an implication for u.s. energy policy, implication for our, you know, most important ally in the asian world, that's an american crisis also. i'm not saying he should cancel the trip. >> makes you wonder why anyone wants the job. tony fratto, thanks very much. we'll be right back. host: could switching to geico really save you
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15% or more on car insurance? host: what, do you live under a rock? man: no way! man: hey rick check this out! anncr: geico. 15 minutes could save 15% or more on car insurance.
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it's like been news whiplash
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lately. harry reid is standing his ground on social security. last night with lawrence o'donnell, he claimed that the third rail of politics has nothing to do with the country's current budget woes. >> i have said clearly and as many times as i can, leave social security alone. social security has not added a single penny, not a dime, a nickel, a dollar, to the budget problems we have. it never has, and for the next 30 years, it won't do that, two decades from now, i'm willing to take a look at it, but not right now. >> well, if the leader of the senate democrats isn't ready to have that conversation, don't expect it to happen this year. happy st. patrick's day. millions of irish people and people who wish they were irish are celebrating st. patricks day it was 1762, that the world's first st. patrick's day parade was held in new york city. back then the parade was made up of irish soldiers serving in the
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english military. now new york's parade is the largest parade in the world. and check this out, of course this morning i actually tweeted a few photos. that's the fountain in front of the white house, which has curiously turned green overnight. imagine that, it must be those help re cannes. st. patrick's day and the first real day of the ncaa tournament taking place on the same day. it is a barkeeper's dream. that's it for "the daily rundown." coming up next chris jansi jansijansin jansijansin jansing & company. some gal named savannah is filling in while andrea is on assignment. maybe i'll see her on the show. see you tomorrow. here's your business travel forecast on this st. paddy's day. so many locations are going to
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be one of the warmest days of the winter. washington, d.c. mid '60s. new york should be up there in the low 60s. boston and chicago, you look agreed for your parade. a chance of showers in minneapolis. have a great day. they're so confident their miles are better, they'll match the miles you've earned on your airline credit card -- up to 100,000 -- on a new venture card. it's unbelievable. believe it. venture card miles are good on any airline, anytime. it's like an upgrade from this... to this. sign up for a venture card at today and get up to 100,000 miles. what's in your wallet? impressive, right? and get up to 100,000 miles. castrol syntec has been reformulated for better performance under the hood. so we gave it a new name. castrol edge with syntec power technology. new name. better formula. it's more than just oil. it's liquid engineering.
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her morning begins with arthritis pain. that's a coffee and two pills. the afternoon tour begins with more pain and more pills. the evening guests arrive. back to sore knees. back to more pills. the day is done but hang on... her doctor recommended aleve. just 2 pills can keep arthritis pain away all day with fewer pills than tylenol.
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this is lara who chose 2 aleve and fewer pills for a day free of pain. and get the all day pain relief of aleve in liquid gels. heroes on a suicide mission, while u.s. nuclear experts say it's far worse. what's really happening in this haze of information.